Tag Archives: vegetables

#Fooking Samosas

samosasIt has been a while since I last cooked something for this blog, and I say this a lot, but in the past five years it seems like it’s always something, right?

Sometimes I let the bad things take control and sometimes I try to shake them off and start surviving. And those are the best times and I will try to make them happen more. Everything that’s happening is beyond my control, but I, me, myself, I am not beyond my control. Right?

Hopefully, at least 😉

Well, this past couple of weeks has had its ups and downs, politically, historically, Greece has come and gone, things in our lives have come in circles, losses, gains… We realized that we are experiencing a concentrated version of life, with its joys and disappointments, shocks and fears, losses and reliefs – and epiphanies like this require strong doses of food and celebration.

So I made samosas. We ate them watching football, drinking beer, spritz, with yoghurt, sausages, salad, cats, friends.

Then I made the video. Because, Foo Fighters. And cooking. Fooking. It makes me smile and laugh, not necessarily in that order.

A word about the food. Folding the samosas can be tricky. Watch the video, it makes the folding part pretty clear. Once you’re through with the folding, the filling is nothing. Also, feel free to use other spices you like. Garam masala will probably work miracles in this. Don’t omit the coriander, it smells exactly like i imagine a baby angel’s hair will smell like. Seriously. But, if you don’t like it, by all means. Add or leave out anything you want. And let me know what you changed and how it turned out.

Also, I don’t fry. So I baked them. But you can also fry them, and they will be crispier and, well, tastier. People who fry, know that. But these have fewer calories and are a bit healthier, so yay for that!

What you will need:

For the dough

3 cups flour

3 TB olive oil

½ TB thyme (dry)

½ tsp salt

less than a cup of cold water

For the filling

3 – 4 potatoes

some peas

1 onion

2-3 cloves of garlic

1 small carrot, grated

1 small chili pepper

1 tsp coriander seeds, broken

1 tsp cumin

½ tsp turmeric

1/3 tsp ginger

½ tsp sweet paprika

Some lemon juice

What you will need to do:

To make the dough, mix the flour, the oil, the thyme and the salt in a big bowl, add some of the water and mix with your hands, continuing to add water until you have a soft dough that doesn’t stick. Cover it with a towel (you can even touch it with some oil to keep it soft) and leave it to rest for about half an hour.

Meanwhile, boil the potatoes and, towards the end, add the peas.

When the potatoes and peas are done, heat some oil in a large pan and sauté your spices, until they are fragrant. At this point, you love me, because your house smells like heaven. Now, add the onion and cook until it is translucent and soft, about 2- 3 minutes. Add the potatoes and peas, the garlic, the carrot, the chili and cook for 4-5 minutes, until everything is brought together and smells like the spices. Take the potato mixture out of the pan, transfer it to a big bowl and add some lemon (as much as you want, don’t add too much, a couple of squeezes will do) and some pepper. Now take a fork and start mashing it, making sure you don’t end up with a pulp. Mash it but not too much, we want some pieces in it.

Let it cool.

Go back to your dough and take a bowl of water and a rolling pin with you. Take your dough, divide it in 8 equal balls, and start rolling them. Once you’ve rolled the first one pretty thin but not paper thin (you’re not making a pie!), cut the circle in half, take one half in your hand, dip your fingers in the water and wet the round edge, roll it and make a cone. This involves some hand crossing and some imagination, but you can check out the video and see how it is done. It’s pretty easy once you’ve seen it and made your first. BTW, the first two always suck, then it gets easier. Take your cone, fill it with your filling, dip your fingers in the water again, wet the remaining edge and close your samosa. Make sure you keep the shape.

At this point I separate myself from tradition and don’t even regret it. At this point you can fry your samosas in some non-fragrant oil and they become crispy and amazing.

But I don’t fry.


Only if I absolutely have to, but I always try to find alternatives.

And alternative I did find.

So, at some point before starting to roll your dough, preheat your oven to 200C (400F). Once ready, place your samosas on an oiled baking sheet, brush them with some egg and put them in the oven for 30-40 minutes, depending on the oven, or until you see them turn golden and beautiful (whichever comes first).

Have them with some greek yoghurt (I suggest full fat or more!) or a chutney of your liking, and bon appetit!

Zucchini pasta with chicken

zucchini pasta1It was Italy time last week, so I am now basically trying to recover – while catching up on some work that always piles up, even when you’re unemployed, how about that! I am also trying to recover from a spectacular Atoms For Peace concert we caught in Rome. It is so refreshing to know that good music is still out there, and that people actually still like it and look for it. The concert was amazing, it was a part of the Rock in Roma festival, at Ippodromo Capannelle (that’s near the Ciampino airport, about 20 minutes – and 20 euros – by taxi from the center of the city). The Festival boasts a surprisingly incredible lineup for July. In all honesty, myself and Mr. S were just standing in front of the wall displaying it, our jaws dropped, very close to tears, holding hands, taking photos, feeling small and all that.

ImageThe venue is amazing, this huge space that holds something like a club dance floor, with music and lights (were there lights? I remember lights, but I’m not sure… I think there were lights!), bars, food, a tables-and-chairs area, a small second stage, A LOT of promotional stands and, coming out of this area, on your left, the stage area: a large open area, on the edge of the horserace track where the stage that hosted the concerts was set.

I don’t think I need to say how awesome the concert was. I am a sucker for Thom Yorke (does it sound weird?? Oh well, whatever), but even objectively it was truly uplifting and special. Thom Yorke was somehow happier and, well… lighter than I had ever seen him in the past (I have now seen him live a total of eight times). All in all, it was a gorgeous night.

Refreshing indeed.

As refreshing as the concert was, though, the weather did not follow suit. It is now really hot, both in Greece and in Italy and, even during today’s «cool break» (we had a couple of storms, some thunder, the cat got terrified and kept meowing to be saved all night long), the atmosphere is not getting any lighter. In this environment, I always turn to vegetables for some freshness. Combined with a piece of chicken breast left in our fridge, my brain sang «chicken zucchini pasta» to me. And, as you very well know, you should never ever ever ignore the voices in your head. So I just went along with their plan.

I had always wondered how this «zucchini pasta» thing turns out, so today seemed like the perfect day to try it. I was not disappointed. The «pasta» is cool, refreshing and very Mediterranean, a perfect addition to a very greek-italian 10-days.

You will need:

1 Chicken breast fillet (I used one, the double one, you know, both sides of the breast – well, about 300gr)

2 zucchinis

3 cloves of garlic

4 (lol, no, I’m kidding) – a pinch of basil

Salt, pepper

What you need to do:

First things first: Take your potato peeler (or one of those special adjustable peelers, whatever you have, I wish I had the fancy equipment, but I don’t. Even so, the potato peeler worked just fine!) and slice the zucchinis in a bowl. Season them lightly and let them stand.

Meanwhile, cut up the chicken and cook it to your liking. I usually cook my chicken on the grill skillet (that link is only to show you which one I mean, I am not really familiar with that specific product), and season it with salt, pepper and some curry. This is how Mr S likes it and this is how I almost always make it. I cut mine in 6-7 pieces in total, seasoned it and cooked it on high heat for about 12-14 minutes.

When the chicken is ready, remove it from the fire and put it in the bowl, along with the zucchini. That will help make the zucchini softer. Return the skillet on the fire, slice up the garlic and throw it in there. Let it fry for about a minute and when it is golden, take your bowl and throw everything back in the skillet. Toss it around a little bit, until the zucchinis release some of their juices and you have a nice brownish juice. That shouldn’t take more than 2-3 minutes.

Add the basil, toss it around a little more and you are done.

Nice, easy and fast, this lunch will – surprisingly – keep you satisfied for quite a while! I am an eater, and almost 3 and a half hours later, I am not even close to craving for anything!

Buon appetito!


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